RABS Uganda students’ update November 20, 2023:
THIRD TERM KARAMOJA SCHOOL FACILITATION REPORT 2023
It is with great pleasure that I bring greetings from the 18 students that are being sponsored by RABS International Ministries in Karamoja districts of Kaabong and Moroto. Special thanks to Mummy Cyndi and all RABs partners and facilitators for enabling these children to attend school who otherwise would be out of school.
This time I began my activities with the Kaabong children after a cumbersome bus journey. The bus broke down and we spent an extra four hours in Soroti as the crew were fixing the problem. We ended up spending twenty five hours on the road.
I found when I arrived three of the four girls (from Loleria) had already reported at school. I reviewed their academic performances for the last term and they had all improved much more than the previous terms. I delivered the school requirements and their personal effects and the next day I proceeded to Loyoro, the home village of the fourth girl to find out what was happening to her.
I found Judith had stayed because she had lost her uncle and they were supposed to bury him that evening. I decided to wait and attend the burial ceremony. I was eager to witness if they are still practicing their crude ways of placing the dead body on top of a rock in the countryside and leaving it there, but to my surprise, this family conducted a more civilized ceremony. They even dug a tomb and after burial, covered it with concrete. This is very rare in Karamoja.
I had some time with Judith, I encouraged her to be strong and urged her to report to school as soon as possible.
The next day I was supposed to travel to Moroto, but I abandoned the trip because we received reports of a clash between army troops and karamojong warriors who had raided a village near Kotido and took away cattle. I had to wait until it was clearly safe to move and that was a day after the day I had scheduled.
Traveling from Kaabong to Kotido was relatively safe but from Kotido to Moroto was interrupted about thirty kilometers to Moroto when the taxi van ran out of fuel but the place looked secure because we were near a camp for workers of a road construction company. We waited until some guys brought fuel from Moroto and proceeded after refueling the van.
At Moroto I met with the sponsored school children, checking their reports for last term and delivering the scholastic materials and school dues to the children and head teacher respectfully. I was given an opportunity to minister to all the children who were present with a video show and the word. I showed a short clip about a bride trying out different gowns and a movie that was acted by karamojongs about a girl called Nakiru who passed through many hardships at home but managed to persevere and continued school until she became a doctor.
I preached to them that in as much as school is preparing them for their future, they also need to be prepared for eternity by fitting in the right garments as a bride does. Many accepted to prepare for eternity by inviting Christ to be their Savior and Lord, and promised to continue attending school despite the challenges involved. I also had some good time with Nechap, the lame girl, very happy to be in my company but her wheel chair broke down and she was not using it.
I am very grateful for the priceless precious sacrifices and contributions of our dear RABS partners who through their relentless and continuous dedication, these children are safely at school and financially facilitated to carry through the entire term.
Surely the blessings of the almighty God will abide with you all and especially Mama Cyndi for spearheading this cause heartedly and enthusiastically. I also thank you all for allowing me to be part of this undertaking.
GOD BLESS YOU,
MUWANGUZI DENIS PETER.
(Volunteer Uganda national director/coordinator Karamoja ministry)
RABS Ugandan students’ update June 5, 2023
Dear Mama Cyndi, RABs board, fellow Ministers and our dear ministry partners, Second term facilitation mission has been carried out successfully in both districts of Moroto and Kaabong.
I first staged at Moroto and the activities there were conducted without hindrances because most of the children had already reported to school except Lokawa who was bedridden with malaria, and Nachap. I checked through each child’s report form of last term and there was considerable improvement in overall performance except for Nechap. I also had a meeting with the parents and emphasized they must help their children report to school in time and not allow them to come back home before the term ends.
I was surprised to see Nechap again crawling and upon inquiring why, I was informed that she cannot push herself in the wheel chair. During the school term other children help push her around the school, but during holidays she stays alone and therefore resorts to crawling. I went to find out the condition of the the wheel chair and found that it needed some repairs where the seat gets fixed to the rod and the wheels are missing some of the support strips.
It was a full day traveling from Moroto to Kotido and then to Kaabong. Kotido and Kaabong are among the districts in northern Karamoja were insecurity involving murders, clashes with army troops, vandalism and robbery occur most. Traveling from Kotido to Kaabong is more risky, as karamojong warriors have raided vehicles, robbed them and killed occupants in several incidences. It was near some of these dangerous spots that the taxi I was traveling in broke down. Its fan belt got torn and as thus we could not move until a new fan belt was brought and installed.
We had to wait for three hours before mechanics from Kotido would arrive and fix the car. Most vehicles refused to stop to help us, I presume because they feared we had staged the occurance to ambush and rob them. It was after two hours that a driver of an NGO vehicle stopped and allowed to help carry three of us to Kaabong leaving the others waiting for other sympathisers.
I was deterred from going to the villages the next day because there was an operation carried out by the army to recover guns from village members. It was on Friday that I was able to travel to Loleria to meet the girls.
I found out one of the girls had relocated to another village. She was sent away by her guardian because of hunger. However I was able to visit the homes of two other girls, engaged with the guardians and prepared them to report to school. The next day I had to travel to Kakamar to meet the third girl, but found out that the village women and older girls had gone to a distant village where visitors to a certain church were distributing food. Because of the security situation, I left before 6pm when they had not come back. I left her transport funds to bring her to school the next day.
By Sunday morning, they had all reported to the boarding facilities. However Regina, a primary seven candidate, was needed to clear registration for primary leaving exams(PLE) by the end of June. I used part of the boarding fees and school fees to pay for P.L.E. and promised to top up the balance in due course.
I was able to visit Catherine at her place of work and she was very happy. She is doing well and sent greetings. She is a public testimony of how RABs ministry helps such disadvantaged children to become useful and responsible members of the community.
I used the 2 am bus that passes Karenga, Kitgum, Gulu, Luwero to Kampala because I had to connect to another soul winning mission starting Monday.
I thank Run Away Brides Ministry and it’s committed partners for enabling some of the vulnerable and needy children in Karamoja to attend school without limitation or lack of basic necessities. The Lord bless you for your generosity towards this course.!
Muwanguzi Denis Peter